Tag archives for Spies
BOOK NAME: A Thunderous Whisper
AUTHOR: Christina Diaz Gonzales
Ani was never important. She was always a quiet, insignificant little girl. Her mother, a short-tempered sardine seller, called her neska. At first, Ani thought this was an affectionate nickname. Yet then she found out it just meant girl. People often made fun of her for being the daughter of the sardinera (sardine seller). Growing up during Spain’s Civil War, Ani didn’t have an easy life. Her father was away, bravely fighting for Guernica, the city Ani lived in.
After years having no friends, Mathias moves into town. He is a young, free-spirited boy, who has a limping problem and walks with a makila, a walking stick. Could Mathias be her first friend? Ani is curious to know what the story behind his family is. After all, who would move to Guernica during this dangerous time? After a movie theatre mishap, Mathias discovers that his father is a spy! Suddenly, a world of promise is before him and Ani. They have the chance to help Mathias’s father and his spy group on their missions. Through many lies and confusing envelopes, the two friends succeed in their missions.
Yet on one terrible day, Guernica is bombed. The village is destroyed, and many are killed. Ani and Mathias manage to survive, but they lose everything. Their world is turned upside down. Left as orphans, they cannot get over the pain of losing their parents and all of their loved ones. Padre Inaki, the kind priest of the village’s church, takes Ani and Mathias into his home. They help his wife take care of all of the injured survivors. But wait- there is hope! Ani reunites with her father, but she must break the news to him that his wife has been killed. And her father cannot stay for long. He must return to continue fighting.
Through helping those in need, Ani and Mathias realize that they can make a difference, far beyond their own village.
I really enjoyed this book. I have to admit- I almost cried during certain parts of it. There are some chapters that may be intense for young children, and I would therefore recommend it to anyone ages 12 and up. Ani and Mathias’s courage is simply inspiring.
BOOK NAME: I, Q: Book One, Independence Hall
AUTHOR: Roland Smith
What if your parents were major rock stars, had a contract signed, and were traversing the entire country performing on a tour? And what if you found out that your stepsister’s mom was a secret service agent, and you also noticed some weird creeps stalking after you? These questions are what stepsiblings Q (Quest) and Angela must come face to face with in the start of a thrilling series by Roland Smith.
Q and Angela’s parents are pop stars, and the entire family is now on a tour performing across the U.S. It seems as if nothing strange could ever occur as the family heads from city to city on a mega RV. Everything, however, changes when an old roadie (people who set up equipment during a stage performance) named Boone spontaneously appears and decides to become the family’s driver. To top that off, Angela begins to harbor strange feelings that someone is following them. That’s when Q discovers that his stepsister’s deceased mother was a former Secret Service operative who was killed by foreign terrorists. Before long, Q and Angela manage to get involved in the secretive, deadly world of intelligence and espionage, as they must encounter and deal with Israeli Mossad agents, private intelligence agencies, and the conspiracy surrounding Angela’s mother’s death. Can Q and Angela uncover the truth behind the death and reveal who the actual villains are?
IQ Book 1: Independence Hall is one of the best modern day thrillers I have ever read. Roland Smith, who is usually an expert author when it comes to nature and animals, finally takes his renowned writing career and steers it into the genre of action/thrillers. The great thing about this book is that instead of featuring just adult characters, Roland Smith is able to include characters who are young adults. As a result, this allows young readers to connect with the main characters, mainly Q and Angela, and therefore, enjoy an amazing reading experience. When Smith writes other novels, he usually enables them to bring forth an excellent plot and at the same time, enlighten readers about the phenomena of science, nature, and biology. Another laudable feature of this book is that Smith decides to put aside scientific topics and brings politics into the mix. IQ Book 1 takes a dive into the world of intelligence and counter-terrorism, political situations affecting the world today, and the hectic lifestyle of renowned rock stars. The cast of the book is a unique one filled with a variety of intriguing, interesting, and even comedic characters. Interesting characters in this book included Q (the main character), who is adept at magician skills and devouring hamburgers in three bites; Angela, whose intelligence, instinct, and coolness allow her to overcome any situation; Boone, the book guru who owns a book collection that would have made the Library of Congress seem like a simple shelf; and Israeli agent Eben, who always seems to daunt the audience with his relentless determination to accomplish a mission. The plot and humor are what certainly define the book, as readers will be hooked onto the plot and laugh at the numerous moments of humor found in abundance throughout the book. The plot, though, may seem a bit too intricate and complicated to understand at first (that’s why I had to read it more than once), but this is a Roland Smith book that you do not want to miss out on!
This book is definitely interesting for any reader out there who’s got nothing on their desk to read. On a scale of 1-10, I’d grant this book a 10.
BOOK NAME: Project Jackalope
AUTHOR: Emily Ecton
One of the most famous mythical animals is the jackalope. According to legend, jackalopes are rabbits
that sprout massive antlers. They are known to like whiskey, sing campfire songs, and wreak havoc with
their deadly deer-like appendages.
Jeremy doesn’t think anything of jackalopes, mostly just trying to earn a C- on his 8 th grade science
fair project. That’s when a live jackalope turns up in his room, courtesy of his crazy scientist neighbor,
Professor Twitchett. Not only is a make-believe creature chewing on his dirty laundry, it seems that a
bunch of shady men in suits are after Twitchett and his experiment, the experiment that Jeremy now
has. Jeremy doesn’t want the jackalope, and would gladly get rid of it, but there is something about
these men that is just too sinister.
Jeremy needs help, so he asks his know-it-all classmate Agatha for assistance. Now Jeremy, his partner
in crime, and their fuzzy little killer, are on the run. They need to find Twitchett, rid themselves of the
jackalope, and get out of this mess.
This book was pretty good. It was very funny. Jeremy incorporated his sarcastic personality into the
storyline with humorous comments and side notes. It really added to the reading experience. I found
it unique that this story made the concept of creating a jackalope somewhat believable. Through some
DNA transplants, Twitchett created an animal hybrid with the body of a rabbit and the antlers of a deer.
It was quite an interesting experiment, and was written about in such a way that it sounded nearly
doable. I enjoyed the surprising way the story concluded, although I won’t spoil any of it. This book is
short and is not overly difficult to read, so it would be good for anyone in elementary or middle school.
Want another opinion? Read Parker’s review!
BOOK NAME: Project Jackalope
AUTHOR: Emily Ecton
When I first saw the cover of this book, I thought it would be boring and about talking animals with the main character being a jackalope–a jackrabbit with antelope horns. But this book really was something else.
This book reminded me of a past book that I’ve read called Boom! Both books have a kid who feels that he can’t trust anyone, and both include creepy guys in suits. One of the main differences is that Boom! went from realistic fiction to extreme sci-fi, and this book went from realistic fiction to minor sci-fi.
This book is about a kid named Jeremy who has a crazy full-grown neighbor named Professor Twitchett, who is still into the little kid spy stuff that I liked when I was in third grade. He left a jackalope that he created at Jeremy’s apartment, which immediately brought a government agency to his door. Obviously, Jeremy wasn’t big on an organization, the FBI for all he knows, chasing him, so he contacted Agatha, who knows Professor Twitchett way better than Jeremy. She panicked and said the Jackalope was her idea, and it all went downhill from there. Who knew the guys chasing them had puke-ray guns and man-eating robots? These guys never do give up!
My favorite character is Agatha because she always had a plan. I highly recommend reading this book. It will make you want to keep reading.
BOOK NAME: I’d Tell You I Love You, but Then I’d Have to Kill You
AUTHOR: Ally Carter
If you like books with lots of action, adventure, and most of all, girl power, then
you will love, I’d Tell You I Love You but Then I’d Have to Kill You by Ally Carter.
This novel rolls spies, romance, and friendship all together to create a story about
young women who have some very surprising talents.
15 year old Cammie Morgan is a sophmore at the Gallagher Academy for
Exceptional Young Women. From the outside, the school appears to be a just
another snooty, private school for rich, stuck up girls, but if you dodge all of
the lasers, sneak past the armed guards and don’t get caught on any of the 50
security cameras that surround the campus, you will discover that the Gallagher
Academy is actually a school for spies. Instead of learning basics about cells and
atoms in science class, Cammie and her friends are taught the latest in chemical
warfare. Instead of just having to learn one language, they have to be fluent in
fourteen, and instead of doing dodge ball or capture the flag in P.E., they learn
how to kill a man seven different ways with their bare hands. However, when
Cammie meets an ordinary boy who doesn’t know she’s a spy, she has no idea
how to express her true feelings about him without revealing her secret identity.
Sure, she may be able to crack CIA codes, take out someone twice her size, and
save the world from ruthless dictators, but can she handle a relationship with a
normal guy who can never know who she really is?
I loved this book and would definitely recommend giving it a chance. It’s a really
fun read with lots of suspense and drama but also with humor as well. Although
some boys might like it, it’s aimed towards a female audience and I think girls will
probably enjoy it more. So, if you want a humorous read full of action, romance,
and espionage, then I’d Tell You I Love You but Then I’d Have to Kill You is
definitely for you.
BOOK NAME: Scorpia Rising
AUTHOR: Anthony Horowitz
15-year-old Alex Rider, teen super spy, has been a vital asset for the British intelligence agency MI6. For about a year, MI6 has dispatched Alex on numerous missions throughout the world to thwart the plans of maniacal, nefarious men who’ve attempted to carry out their diabolical plans. But now, Alex has had enough of dangerous missions and has “retired” in order to enjoy the luxuries of being a teenager. However, his retirement is soon cut short by the arrival of an old enemy: Scorpia. Alex had already defeated this ruthless terrorist organization twice in the past, but Scorpia has returned in order to restore its shattered reputation and has its attention turned towards the Middle East. Alex is forced to go undercover under the orders of MI6 and halt whatever Scorpia is trying to accomplish. Can Alex defeat Scorpia a third time, or will he have finally met his match?
Scorpia Rising by Anthony Horowitz, was a superb book fraught with suspense, action, and memorable characters. The author definitely ends the Alex Rider series well with this book and at the same time, gives readers a taste of what a true action-packed book should be like. Scorpia Rising contains several commendable “positives.” For one, the action surpassed that of the previous books in the series. Readers will be hooked onto the book while they read about Alex’s daring exploits as he races to stop Scorpia’s operations in the Middle East. From narrow escapes from burning boats to epic fistfights, readers will be caught in the thick of the action. Suspense also accompanies the action in the story by allowing smooth transitions between certain sections of the book. The author also tinkers with the plot section of the story and not only crafts an intricate, eventful storyline, but also makes the characters themselves appeal to the reader. Scorpia Rising introduces new characters while also including returning ones. An example of a returning character is Julius Grief, one of Dr. Grief’s clones in the second book of the series, while a new character includes Razim (the primary antagonist of the book).
This book did not contain many negatives, but one particular one might be the complex plot. Some readers may find it difficult to understand what is going on, but fortunately, the action and other positives of the book will make up for plot confusion. On a scale of 1-10, I’d give this book a 10, as it clearly represents what an outstanding thriller should be like. I’d recommend this book to any action/adventure reader who’s scouring the library shelves searching for a perfect thriller.
BOOK NAME: The Unknown Spy
AUTHOR: Eoin McNamee
Hi again, blog readers! I’m glad to be back but not glad to tell you that I’m reviewing a book that I most definitely did not love. It’s The Unknown Spy by Eoin McNamee.
The book is about a spy named Danny and all his friends going on a quest to save the treaty stone, a stone that makes it impossible for the Lower World to invade Danny’s world, the Upper World. Right before the quest begins, two of the four quest members get stuck at the spy school. Now only Danny and one other quest member are going on the quest. It’s crazy how much double-crossing and lying they go through to get the stone back safely so they can save the world!
I think the main reason I didn’t like it was because I thought it was full of negative stuff. For instance, my favorite character, Les was really funny and a good sport but he was excluded from all his friends’ quests. Who would exclude a nice guy like Les? The guy who excluded him was a big jerk named Bruneholm. He was my least favorite character because he was kind of an adult bully. He was the assistant headmaster of the spy school that Les and his friends attended.
Anyway, this book is a bit scary so I wouldn’t try reading it at night. It freaked me out a couple of times when I was up late with it! It’s a book that is full of surprises, traitors, hatred and war, so if you’re into that kind of stuff, you might just like it. I didn’t though. Sorry!
BOOK NAME: The Eiffel Tower’s Daughter
AUTHOR: Bethany Huang
Swanilde is a French girl, whose world turns upside down when her divorced mother gets remarried. If that wasn’t enough, she overhears that her new stepfather is a spy for the French government. Swanilde decides to travel to her real father, and warn him. Who knows what this spy could be hiding?
On the way to her father, Swanilde meets a boy named Val, who she later finds out is her brother, who had run away many years before. Val and Swanilde reunite with their father. But then, Swanilde discovers that her family had been hiding a secret from her for her entire life. This secret is too hard to bear, and Swanilde decides to run away.
Swanilde ends up in France, Egypt, and even Greece! She goes on many journeys, which lead her to discover how important family really is.
I loved this book! While I was reading it, I could not put it down! I saw that there was a page about the author, so I decided to check it out. I was completely surprised when I found out that the author is actually ten years old! She writes amazingly well, and I strive to be like her. I hope you will read this book, it is worth your time!
BOOK NAME: Andrew North Blows Up the World
AUTHOR: Adam Selzer
When I was in 3rd grade, I LOVED sneaking around my house and spying on my parents and brothers, but Andrew North takes spying to a new level. Andrew gets into spy gadgets, enemy spies, and a lot more in this book. At school, he loses his brother Jack’s spy gadget in Storage Room B without Jack knowing. The gadget looks kind of like a calculator and potentially could blow up the world. Storage Room B is a mysterious place at the school that Mr. Gormulka, a Russian spy who works at the school as a janitor, guards with his life.
The book is about how Andrew North gets back the spy gadget. You would have never guessed this is a spy book just by looking at the cover, or even reading the title. The cover makes it seem like an extremely boring book to me, but when I read it, it ended up being one of my favorites! My favorite part of the book is when Ryan, the class troublemaker, helps Andrew with his mission in the end. If you like spying and lots of excitement, you’ll love this book.
BOOK NAME: Crocodile Tears
AUTHOR: Anthony Horowitz
Alex Rider has worked for different intelligence agencies no less than six times: M16, the CIA, and the ASIS, to be specific. However, he’s not a James Bond character… no tailored suit or gun for him. On his missions, he wears a t-shirt and jeans; his job is to look completely innocent – a task that isn’t very hard, as he’s only 15 years old.
Alex used to be the British Intelligence, or M16′s, secret weapon. After his uncle and guardian, British spy Ian Rider, died when he was 14, M16 recruited Alex for various missions. Alex proved to be more than capable of handling dangerous situations, but he didn’t like to be a spy–he wanted to lead a normal life. Now, he’s convinced that he’s finally going to be able to be an ordinary teenager. But a series of events that occurs while he’s on holiday rapidly change his view of things. Alex is once again plunged into the dangerous spy world as he learns more about the potentially fatal situation – which wouldn’t just mean death for him, but for millions of people across Africa as well.
When one of my best friends mentioned this book to me, I wanted to read it right away. However, I couldn’t, because Crocodile Tears is the 7th book in the Alex Rider series. I’ve found that the books can stand alone, but it’s still a good idea to read them in order. One thing I didn’t like about this book as much is that it’s not really written from Alex’s point of view, which was one of the factors that drew me to the other books. I think it took away from the story a bit, but the novel is still one of the best I’ve ever read. The author also uses a technique that I like a lot: giving specific details like the model of car, what kind of engine it has, along with other things. If you liked The Hunger Games, Crocodile Tears would be a great read for you!